Sunday, January 27, 2013

 Kids with Mom: Keri, Kirk, and Kelli

 Mom and Bill with Kelli, Caleb, and Hannah

 Mom and Bill with Keri and Kevin with Isaiah, Sofia and Selah

Mom and Bill with Kirk and Tamra with Ezekiel and Kyle

Friday, January 25, 2013

Birthday Love!

Each morning, Bill reads a chapter to me from the Bible.  We are in the Book of Daniel.  After he reads, I read a passage from Max Lucado's book, "Everyday Deserves a Chance!"  It's really quite funny, but has deep meaning.  Remembering that God has planned everyday just for me has changed my attitude when things seem to go wrong.

Yesterday, Janice and I arrived at Dillard's for a make-over.  The girl who had called me was sick.  So, the Este Lauder representitive offered to help using the Lancome products that I usually buy (once a year.)  It wasn't busy, so I don't think she was too inconvenienced.  Neither Janice or the make-up artist thought I looked much different after the make-up was applied.  But it was fun.   I bought some tinted moisturizer, and Janice and I picked out the same lipstick.   After browsing at a few more stores, Janice bought me orange chicken and Chinese noodles in the food court.

I finished making a salad and buttering garlic bread a few minutes before my piano student arrived.  She was excited because I was wearing the necklace she had given me for Christmas.  She said something about wearing a bracelet to match in the future.  Only later did I know what she was talking about. When I picked up the box to put the necklace away,  I heard a rattle, and when I looked inside there was the bracelet that I hadn't seen earlier.  I felt really stupid!

When Bill arrived home from teaching at Shawnee High School, he brought me a chocolate cake that he had ordered.  It was decorated with plastic eighth notes, and said, "Happy Birthday, Marti".  I had made a sugar-free apple pie so that Mom could enjoy dessert with us.  Noel's family joined us. 

I answered the phone throughout the day!  Galen called me at 8:00 a.m.  It was 6 a.m. in California!  He also sent a very sweet email.  Kirk, Kelli and Keri also called.  Keri's kids sang to me loudly and talked for awhile.  Noel read greetings to me that he was getting on FaceBook.  He sent pics of my cake to everyone.  After everyone had gone home, David called me from Mexico.  I received nice cards and gifts from friends as well.  I love you guys!  God gives me so many blessings, and I want to give back.   Noel is going to come over later and help me with my pictures.  My blog layout has changed and I'm lost!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Sixty-Five Years Later

I was born on January 24, 1948 on my parent's 7th wedding anniversary.  I am humbled that God has allowed me to live for 65 years!  Many of my friends and family members died much younger.  Knowing that, I feel responsible for the years I have.  Yesterday, I went to the doctor.  He is still checking my heart.  I had gained a few pounds over the holidays, so next week I will be seeing a nutritionist at the Wellness Center.  I'm ready!

Yesterday, I spent the morning at St. Anthony Hospital doing volunteer work once again.  I had missed being there when I was sick.  Pastor Larry had a funeral to officiate, so he gave me the ER phone, and left me in charge of a patient who was "coded".  I was on my rounds when the phone vibrated.  I left the 2nd floor and headed to the ER.  I didn't see any family members, so I went to the trauma room to see if they had gone in there.  When I entered, no one was there except for the deceased woman.  I stood there and gazed on her face.  I was shocked to see her lips move and her chest rise and fall with what looked like shallow breath.  I went directly to the charge nurse and asked to be educated.  She told me the patient's heart had stopped 8 minutes earlier, and she had been on a breathing machine which was still causing the lungs to react.  I was relieved!  What upset me the most was that the staff could find no record of any family or friends!!  The nursing home had no records, and she had no visitors.  Lord, help us to find these people and make a difference!

Keri had a productive conference with Sofia's elementry principal.  He recognized that Sofia's religious rights had been trampled on when she was not allowed to give Christmas candy greetings to her school friends.  The teacher apologized and said that she was a Christian, but was in fear of not being "politically correct".  What has happened to our nation?  Everyone should be able to express their spiritual beliefs without fear of being different.

Noel's wife, Janice, retired last week, and we are enjoying her being with her family here in Shawnee for several days.  Tomorrow morning, Janice is going with me to Dillard's for a make-over.  Since it is my birthday, I thought that would be fun.  Last Saturday, Bill took me to the mall to choose a pepper mill and salt shaker set.  I also bought some items at HallMark for Christmas gifts next December.

I will write more later.  I have an apple pie in the oven, and must drive to Shawnee for a piano lesson.  I am so grateful to be healthy again and am enjoying this week!   


Friday, January 18, 2013

Compassion for Our World

I wrote a blog earlier, got sidetracked and didn't publish it.  Bill is teaching today at Gordon Cooper Tech Center.  The class is "Digital Media".  I determined that I would get this blog and other things finished while he is gone.  While making tonight's chicken stew in my crockpot, I listened to the news on Fox.  (I've learned that it is the only channel that one can hear all sides of an issue.)  As the stories were unfolding regarding various athletes, I was reminded that "to err is human, but to forgive is divine".  Jesus taught us "compassion".  That word means "to suffer together".  Our Bible Study lesson for Sunday is from the Book of Obadiah.  In the first chapter, God warns that we are not to gloat over our  brother's day of calamity, nor are we to rejoice at other's destruction.  We have all sinned and need forgiveness.  And, in some cases, those in distress need our help. 

I am amazed that people are so upset over guns and the killing of 20 elementary children.  Out of selfishness and convenience, America killed 1,210,000 unborn babies in one year.  Our president has approved of partial birth abortions which means that it can be murdered if it is born alive.  It is not a wonder to me that life is not viewed as precious.  If one becomes deeply depressed, it makes sense to end your life and take others with you when you don't believe that you were created by God and you are special to Him.  (Source:  I have compassion for those unborn babies and have asked God to forgive our nation.  I'm very glad I wasn't aborted!  If we didn't waste our resources, there would be plenty for all!  God provides.  People destroy.

Speaking of compassion, my daughter, Kelli had a trying week!  On her way back to Grand Rapids from Oklahoma, her Honda broke down in Highland, Illinois.  She called from a hotel.  We wanted to help her, so we sent money with Keri and Kevin who left the next morning to go back to Chicago.  Kelli rented a car and drove with Hannah and Caleb back home.  She had a magazine to publish for the university!  After a week, she went back to Highland to pick up her car.  It ran perfectly!  However, one hour from home, her car hit a Michigan bear.  It was dark and raining, so she kept driving.  Her insurance provided her with another rental car and are repairing the car to the tune of $1,600.  Kelli reports that she has learned to totally depend on God to care for her.   Like Daniel, we might go through the fire, but we will come through better people. 

Last week, Bill and I finally began to feel healthy.  We had our flu shots, so that was never a problem.  Our chest colds hung on forever.  Now, Gramma has the same cold and we are watching her very carefully. 

I gave my piano lessons as usual this week.  My students tell me their life stories that are terrible!  One little girl has seen so much of the world due to her mother going in and out of prison.  She was taken out of a bad foster home and now lives with her grandparents.  This child is so cute, sweet and smart.  I give her lots of hugs and tell her there is a better way to live your life.  She told me how she went to VBS last summer with a friend, and finds peace and encouragement at church.  She is only 10 years old.  Hopefully, she is learning to value life and that she has purpose!

Before Christmas, my granddaughter, Sofia, took bags of candy to school with a note that said, "Merry Christmas" and gave them to her friends.  The second grade teacher confiscated them and sent them back home so that no one would be offended.  Keri spoke to the teacher about Sofia's right to express herself.  The same school has lessons about Jewish holidays, and celebrates those days by not having school!  I grew up in San Diego where there were many Jewish people living all around us.  We honored each other, and I recall having a "Festival of Lights" drama in my junior high school.  In the same program, my orchestra played Christams carols.  Why is this war against Christians so necessary?  Satan is using people in an attempt to destroy the Gospel.  Many attempts have been made to destroy the Bible, the Jewish people, and God.  It cannot and it will not ever happen.  God is stronger, and He will prevail in the end.  I am absolutely sure, and I know that I am on the winning side!  That makes me strong and have compassion for those who don't have that confidence. 

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Happy New Year!

Happy New Yer!  The house is very big now!  All the kids and grandkids (12 of them) have returned home, and I went to the doctor!  Yes, I did not escape the upper respitory stuff that is going all around the country.  Thank you God. There is medicine to make us feel more comfortable.  I was given a little pill called a "pearl" to stop the coughing mechanism at night.  Last night, I slept for 8 hours straight and didn't want to wake up.  Bill went shopping for me this morning.

At least I enjoyed the season before I crashed.  The highlights of the week were taking everyone to see a basketball game at the OU arena (we won), having a homemade yeast donut fry together at reunion hall (about 30 of us), everyone bowling together (even the little ones), and going to church together at New Beginnings.  Kirk preached a very moving sermon about his own rebellion as a youth and coming back to God.  Hannah, my 15 year old granddaughter sang "I'm desparate for You"  and blew everyone away with the strength and quality of her voice!  She has a Mariah Carey sound.  Later in the week, we went to the Rising Star Gym in Shawnee to watch Sofia and Selah do their gymnastic moves.   Sofia (8 yrs.) is preparing for her first competition.  The owner of the gym had the prescribed music and put it on to watch Sofia.  She was so impressed that she gave her a free 30 minute lesson, and told her to spend the summer with her grandparents to train!  I was impressed as well. The tiny little girl can do double back flips, and change hands on the high bars.  While Sofia practiced, Selah was making stuffed bears do splits on the balance beam, and swinging on the high bars.  Selah is shy, but does perfectly straight handstands when no one is looking. 

We missed Roger and Julie.  They had planned to come for part of the week.  However, they had just returned from visiting their daughter in India and were not feeling so well.  I'm sure they will visit us when they recover.  It was sad to say good-bye to David and Meche.  They are living in southern Mexico and get here once a year.  David is teaching English at the University there and Meche is a librarian at another college nearby.   David missed being with the family for so many years, and he loved catching up.  It was his first donut fry that was started about 20 years ago.  Mom loved having him home!!!  I thought of the story of the Prodigal Son.  There is such a party in heaven when God's kids return to Him!   We will have many challenges this next year, but I put all of my trust in my Father who has riches, and has solved all of my problems before I know about them.  Peace!